Monday, March 08, 2010

The Coming Out Party

I have asked all of you to come out from behind your "hiding rock" & while you may notice others coming out with you, because this is the way "imagery of the mind" works, each of you will come alone. Here's why. You were born alone & will die alone. The place in-between is called "Your Life." Please repeat that aloud! This is not the life of anyone else, but Your Life. It doesn't belong to your mother, father, children, husband, significant other or anyone else. It's very important for you to understand this, because most people with eating issues are co-dependent & have been since early childhood. Unfortunately, those of us who have eating issues & I include mySelf, live lives that are so intertwined with the lives of others, that we often don't know where we end & others begin. This is what we'll call a "co-dependent mindGame" & it needs to end because here we are beginning a new Journey.

Now, I already hear your question because I've heard it so many times, even from my own co-dependent self. How can I be separate from others & what about my responsibilities to others? The first part of the question is easy to answer. When your umbilical cord was cut, you were separated from your mother. Yes, she & others brought you up, but you were a separate being from that moment forward. Even when you believed that you were connected, that was a fictional story you told & sold to yourSelf. Perhaps you fell in love with the story & maybe you're still in love with it. Being separate can be both easy & difficult. It can be enjoyable & painful. Here's a sample of a descriptive "life script." You were taught things & then you went off into the world to practice them on your own. Sometimes you succeeded & other times you fell down, but then you got up & learned from the fall. In some parts of the story of life-script, others came to rescue you, even when you were completely capable of taking care of yourSelf. Perhaps they meant well. They loved & wanted to protect you, but even so, this was the birth of controlling, often stunting your confidence in yourSelf, as well as taking away your right to figure out your own issues.

In life, everything is about balance. As a child, it was difficult to see what was happening. I know you have seen children that fall down, then look around before crying, making sure they will be heard & then rescued. Unfortunately, this can become a very bad habit & is very connected to the development of co-dependency & connected addictions.

Now, back to the second part of the orginal question, the part about you being "first" & the notion that you are the most important person in your life. Obviously this is not my original idea. I didn't make it up & I know you have heard it before, but hearing something does not mean learning or internalizing it, so here it is again. Throughout this program we'll be working on internalizing it. You are responsible to yourSelf "first." If you don't respect & care for yourSelf, then you cannot respect & care for others. It's as simple as that. You must lead your own parade. You are the drum major & everyone else follows. It often helps to know that others also have their own parades, where they come first. This is their parade, not Yours. Image this in your thought processes. Everyone has their own life path for their own parade. We are all self-responsible for our own parade & what is magical about this, is that there tends to be less conflict between parade leaders when we live within this image. It's true that life is never without conflict, but when we meet from a position of respect & honor, first for the Self & then from the other, solving issues becomes much easier.

So, just a few other things I want to share with you as we begin this journey. Once again, no one matters here except you. The changes you are going to choose to make belong to you. You own them. You don't need permission to change. Now, that may be a hard idea for you to swallow, but that's only because you've been practicing co-dependency for so long. You've grown up feeling that you are responsible for everyone & for everything. You probably live in a black & white world. Things are either good or bad. You are guilty or innocent & most of the time you are guilty. You probably stuff your emotions or express them in harmful ways, negative food behaviors falling into this category. You may have other ways of expressing your internal stuffed strife. Most of us do. These can include all sorts of things, because over the years we tend to be very creative. We may turn to alcohol, smoking, drugs including prescription, over-the counter & sometimes even illegal substances.

We may have issues with shopping, hoarding, hiding, lying & most likely have a closet full of self-masks for every occasion. We are so skillful that we can pretend to be all sorts of characters, playing out all sorts of emotions, but none of them are really who we are. An unauthentic life can be very frightening, because if you don't know who you are, you may not like your authentic Self & perhaps no one else will like her either. This is pure story-telling & something you will learn to edit down the path.

If you have been behind your "hiding rock" for a long time, the You that comes forward may be quite immature or perhaps You will be wearing an"inauthentic mask" glued together with guilt, shame or excuse glue. But, it really doesn't matter. All that is important is that you have come out & agreed to work with the program. It doesn't matter if you are nervous, annoyed, disheartened, depressed, afraid of failing, feeling a lack interest or anything else. If you have come out & have honestly & wholeheardedly agreed to work with this program, you are already successful. You have already begun to mature.

Here everything is about growing up & accepting the fact that You are separate & self-responsible. You will learn things, you will go forward into the world, sometimes you will succeed & other times you will fall down. You will then get up, learning from your fall & go forward. It's as simple as that. You will come to understand how your disorderly eating issues are connected to your immaturity, your inability to accept being separate & self-responsible. You will learn to love, honor & respect yourSelf as a separate being. Sometimes this will be easy & other times it will be difficult. You will give up your inauthentic masks, along with many aspects of old habits & behaviors, no matter what their age. Some will go easily & others will kick & scream, but they will go.

2010 Copyright May not be reproduced in any fashion without permission of the author.

Elizabeth Bohorquez, RN, C.Ht
Clinical Medical & Self-Development Hypnotherapist
Author - Sugar...the Hidden Eating Disorder & How to Lick It